New Delhi: India will soon launch its second indigenously-built nuclear submarine INS Aridhaman to boost its underwater fighting prowess. The new vessel, being built at the Ship Building Centre in Visakhapatnam, is loaded with numerous advanced features.
INS Aridhaman has more missile-carrying capacity than its sister sub INS Arihant, which was inducted into service in 2009. The submarine can move faster underwater and carry ballistic missiles such as the K-15 and K-4. These missiles can reportedly hit targets as far as 3500 km.
INS Aridhaman, which is being built under the Advanced Technology Vessel (ATV) project, can carry up to 24 indigenously-developed missiles. Another key feature of INS Aridhaman is its powerful reactor. The new submarine’s reactor is said to be more powerful than Arihant’s 83 MW pressurised light-water reactor.
The stronger reactor would allow Aridhaman to boost its speed in an unprecedented manner under the sea. The submarine is also fitted with seven-blade propeller, powered by a pressurised water reactor, which allows the vessel to travel at 24 nautical miles per hour under the water.
On surface, Aridhaman can move at a speed of 12-15 knots. Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman is likely to launch the new submarine later this month, and then it will undergo extensive trials before its induction into service, the New India Express reported.
Since submarines are hard to detect, they enable a country to retain a second-strike capability in case of a first-nuclear strike. “By virtue of its stealth and attendant survivability of second-strike capability, a nuclear submarine is particularly suited for nuclear deterrence,” the government noted in a 2009 report.
With the launch of the home-made submarines, India has joined elite group of five other countries – the permanent members of the UN Security Council – which operate indigenously-built nuclear vessels.